Short sea operator Kursiu Linija has expanded its European office
network and invested heavily in improved IT systems in order to meet growing
demand for short sea transportation
linking Eastern and Western Europe.
On July 1, 2005 Kursiu Linija will
open its own fully staffed offices in
Felixstowe, Rotterdam and Hamburg. These will be followed by a new Latvian
office in Riga in August.
"Kursiu Linija is now an established brand moving over 120,000 teu annually
for major shippers, linking low-cost Eastern Europe suppliers with retail
chains in Western Europe," explains Arijus Ramonas, managing director of
Kursiu Linija. "We have had a long, fruitful and mutually beneficial
relationship with our previous agents, Eimskip, but the demands of the trade
now require us to have our own offices in key locations. These offices will
improve customer service, as we will be able to deploy one integrated IT
system across all of them. The costs we save through not using an agency can
be deployed into efficiency improvements in tracking units and getting
closer to the customer."
Kursiu Linija will employ 12 people in its Felixstowe offices, who will
deal with UK customers and goods moving through Teesport and Ipswich, Kursiu
Linija's UK gateways. In Rotterdam it will employ 8 staff and in Hamburg 6.
"All of these staff know our customers' needs well, as they have come with
us from Eimskip," explains Martin Dale, marketing director. "That gives us
continuity and a platform to build on. At the same time, we are equipping
them with a ShipNet-based system which will improve communication, booking
and tracking. The next step is to open another customer liaison office in
Latvia, and to consolidate all our operations staff at a new centre in
Klaipeda, Lithuania. That gives us the benefit of having booking and liaison
offices close to the customers, while improving efficiency and cutting
operational costs. At the same time, by taking the agency out from between
us and our major customers, we will be able to understand their needs and
serve them better."
Kursiu Linija has recently expanded its fleet of high-cube pallet wide 45 ft
containers and chartered a vessel capable of lifting a full load of these
units. This allows retail shippers to ship goods in units which match a full
standard trailer size, cutting down handling, improving security and
reducing costs for the customer.